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Nickname: Los Catrachos
Number of World Cup appearances: 1
Best World Cup finish: Group stage (1982)
Central America is an area that too often gets swept under the rug, with the attention understandably being given to the top South American teams or even elsewhere towards Europe or Africa. But Honduras is one nation that has talent that needs to be given its accolades. Stars like Wilson Palacios, David Suazo and Mayner Figueroa all make their living playing in Europe and several others are situated in domestic leagues throughout Europe’s vast football continent.
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1982 was their only World Cup appearance, and it was a brief one with a group stage exit. But if you expect this long shot to just show up and take a beating you are completely mistaken.
Honduras fought tooth and nail just for their tournament berth, needing a final victory over El Salvador and some timely help that they received from the United States when the Americans earned a late draw against Costa Rica. The U.S.’s late goal sent Honduras through and Costa Rica was forced to battle it out in a playoff with Uruguay, ultimately falling short of South Africa.
2010 Honduras World Cup Odds
Honduras is currently listed at 500/1 to win the World Cup.
They are 25/1 to win Group H.
Key Player To Watch
Carlos Pavon is one of Los Catrachos’ best players and he plays domestically with club side Real Espana. He led the team with seven goals in qualifying and in those 10 matches Honduras had just one loss. 500/1 odds is likely a good number comparatively to other World Cup teams in this year’s field, but something tells me this team is going to show much more than oddsmakers are expecting from the Central American country. Pavon is one of the leaders that will carry the load.
Best Team Asset
One of the few teams that power countries won’t get up to play is Honduras. It is what it is, but Honduras can bank on the fact that someone like Spain isn’t going to stay up late at night worrying about this team, and that can play into the hands of this minnow.
Key Team Weakness
Honduras can’t compete with offensive genius of the Spaniards. Maybe the same can be said when up against the second place group favorite Chile. And even Switzerland has more on the table with their experience, so Honduras doesn’t have a whole lot to rally around, other than playing the disrespect card and knowing not many outside their home country will expect anything to come from their World Cup showing.
Honduras World Cup Predictions
Three games and out for Honduras, and not to say that the Central Americans can’t earn a victory, but I wouldn’t bet on it. Their group play schedule isn’t favorable at all, getting Chile and Spain off the bat and after those two games it could be all be sealed for an early exit. Fourth-place finish for Honduras is my prediction.
Key First Round Match (best betting opportunity)
If things play out like they should, Honduras will be 0-2 after matches against Chile and Spain. That will leave them all but out of the tournament, but in their third match against Switzerland on June 25, you can’t rule out teams earning a win to salvage something after already knowing their World Cup fate. Facing the Swiss will still have them at +120 odds or so, and that has value. Probably the best bet, if any, for Honduras in this tournament.
Honduras World Cup Group Play Schedule
v. Chile, June 16, 2010 – 7:30 a.m. ET at Mbombela (Nelspruit)
v. Spain, June 21, 2010 – 2:30 p.m. ET at Ellis Park (Johannesburg)
v. Switzerland, June 25, 2010 – 2:30 p.m. at Free State (Mangaung/Bloemfontein)
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